Things I’m leaving behind in 2015
by She Flies With Her Own Wings
This past year started off mediocre, included some of the most difficult times in my life, and ended on a high. It was a year of transition – a year of breaking so that I could be rebuilt and reborn into the woman I was always supposed to be.
2015 you challenged me. You hurt me. You made me cry. You defeated me… Almost.
I would be kidding if I said that 2015 didn’t leave me scarred. It was the hardest year of my life.. and yet also the most rewarding.
I couldn’t have made it through a single second if it weren’t for so many of the people in my life; so 2015 is for all of you. Those who believed in me, who stood by me, and who told me everything would be ok. I can’t begin to explain how much I love and appreciate you all. You are my heroes – you saved me.
So although I’m taking all of you wonderful people with me and kicking this year off with a bang, there are plenty of things I’ve decided to leave behind in 2015…
- Self-limiting beliefs
With self-limiting beliefs comes little self-worth, insecurities, and self-doubt. I am my own worst critic, and sometimes that prevents me from celebrating myself and believing in myself. Who cares if dreams are unrealistic, they’re your dreams…believe in them. Sometimes we need to remind ourselves how enough we are. Humility is not thinking less of yourself, it’s thinking of yourself less.
- Saying yes, when I want to say no
I love to say yes – I love being involved, taking on new opportunities and challenges, and helping out someone else. So although I’m still going to say yes a lot of the time, I’ve realized I need to ask myself if saying yes to someone/something else means saying no to myself. Being selfless is a trait I will always love about myself… but it’s time to start being a tiny bit more selfish.
- Overusing the phrase ‘I’m sorry’
I am the queen of saying ‘I’m sorry’. I say sorry even when I shouldn’t be the one apologizing. I’m going to start thinking before I speak when it comes to saying I’m sorry. By choosing more carefully when I apologize, my ‘I’m sorry’s’ will hold more value and meaning.
- Obsessing and overthinking
I used to spend so much time mulling over something that happened or something I wanted to say. So much that it would consume me to the point where I wouldn’t say what I wanted to say or I would make something a big deal in my head that didn’t really matter. So I’m just going to say what I mean and mean what I say, and not dwell on the past; I’ve got more important things to worry about.
- Asking everyone for their opinions
I ask people for their opinions for two reasons: one being that I value the people who are close in my life, and two because I want to please those people. Now this isn’t to say that I no longer value those people’s opinions, because I do, but when I get so many different opinions, then I get even more conflicted because I can’t please everyone. So here’s to following my heart and doing what is best for me.
- Explanations for my decisions
People aren’t always going to agree with your decisions. I’ve learned that a lot throughout my life. But I’ve also learned that I don’t need to give people an explanation for my decisions – I’m doing what is best for me, and that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s going to be best for everyone else. I still might be wrong and make mistakes sometimes, and there might be people who think ‘I told you so’…but I’ll figure that out for myself.
- Destructive relationships
If you constantly bring drama and/or negativity into my life, I’m sorry (actually I’m not), but you’re staying in the fond memories of what was 2015. There’s no need for people who bring you down and bring out the worst in you. They say you are who you surround yourself with, so I’m choosing my team wisely.
- Toxic environments
I spent 5 months of this past year in a toxic environment. That was 5 months too many. Life is to short to be surrounded by drama, negativity, and anxiousness. If people and/or places aren’t adding to your life, they’re taking away from it. Later, ain’t nobody got time for that.
- Being ‘busy’
We need to stop the glorification of busy. I don’t know how many times when I’m asked how I’m doing or when I ask someone else, the answer is always, “oh you know, just keeping busy”. That doesn’t answer the question. We can be busy doing the things we love, or busy doing things we hate. Don’t get me wrong I hate doing nothing, but it’s as if those who aren’t ‘busy’ aren’t doing enough with their lives. Well I’m now going to be busy doing the things I love – busy being outdoors and adventuring, busy being with friends and family. Taking time to live life will only inspire your work.
Theodore Roosevelt once said that “Comparison is the thief of joy” – he couldn’t have been more right. We always seem to want what others have. Whether that’s physical appearances, love, where we’re at with our jobs or in the world. We’re all on our own journeys, and we’re all uniquely ourselves. It’s time to start celebrating ourselves – treat yourself as you would a small child – with patience and love.
- Grudges and guilt
I’ve realized that grudges are a waste of time. They steel your happiness and make it very difficult to live in the present. I used to think that by forgiving people, I was giving them their power back…but that’s not the case at all… by truly forgiving someone, you allow your soul to be at peace. It takes real strength to forgive someone, including yourself. A few months ago I let go of my grudges; grudges against people from my past and even guilt from my own past. I was finally at peace, which allowed me to be present and feel truly happy.
- Staying up late
I can waste so much time staying up until the late hours of the night. Yet I find I’m most productive in the early hours of the morning; it feels like the rest of the world is still fast asleep and Im the only one who’s awake and everything feels like it isn’t really real. I forget about the problems because for that period of time it’s just me, the world, and the sunrise. In 2016 I want to see more sunrises – sunsets are easy, everyone see’s them. But sunrises require effort and hard-work.
Wasting time. Wasting energy. Wasting emotions etc. But also now that I’m in a larger city, I’m going to make more of an effort to ‘help’ the planet. I’m going to take advantage of a walkable city and public transportation. I’m going to limit the amount of paper towels and plastic bottles that I use. I’m going to be intentional in all that I do.
- Mindless spending
It’s so easy nowadays to purchase little things here and there on our credit cards. I love shopping just as much as the next girl, and I’m a total foodie (Portland isn’t helping that); however I’ve realized that I want to look at my purchases as investments. Is it something I need? Is it going to benefit me long term? Is it going to help me grow and learn? Is it going to help me create memories with friends and loved ones? If the answers to those questions are no… then I’m going to transfer that money into my savings.
- Student Loans
Living at home the past two years helped me take a big chunk out of my student loans. With the help of eliminating mindless spending, I’m planning to kiss those student loans goodbye. Debt free is going to feel oh so good! And free!!
- Fear of the unknown
It’s ok to be scared. Being scared means you’re about to do something really, really brave. I’m a firm believer that everything you want is on the other side of fear, and that if your dreams don’t scare you, they’re not big enough. The comfort zone can be dangerous. I was comfortable for that last two years. I would daydream about the things I wanted to do; wondering to myself ‘what if I end up hating it?’ ‘what if I fail’ etc. what if… what if… what if… Psychology says, always go with the choice that scares you the most, because that’s the one that is gong to help you grow.
- Holy socks
Not holy socks as in the biblical ‘faith on your feet’…. but holy socks in the sense that so many of my socks literally have holes in them. I hate spending money on socks, there are so many other things I would rather purchase. I’m 25 though now, so it’s time to be a big girl and get some new socks.
Thanks to 2015, I’m stronger because I had to be. I’m smarter because of my mistakes, happier because of the sadness I’ve known, and now wiser because I’ve learned.
“I hope you can look back on it — the good times and the bad — and see how your experiences have shaped you. For the better. I hope you can see your moments of weakness as moments leading to an affirmation of your strength. I hope you can forgive yourself of the actions you regret, let them go, and find excitement and certainty in the person you are and who you are becoming. Most of all, I hope you can appreciate the journey that is life, and not get too caught up in worrying about the destination. Enjoy the now and all that it offers.” – Jessica McGraw
Well 2015, you’ve been a wild ride. Although this roller coaster is ending on a high, I’m more than ready to get off. So bring it on 2016 – I’m ready for you! This is going to be my year!!